ANA’s Latest Initiative: Elevating Multicultural Marketing

Aug 18, 2018. Advertising Age by Rochelle Newman-Carrasco.- Charter members of the Association of National Advertisers’ Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing recently met in New York for the first all-committee gathering since the group officially kicked off earlier this year. A who’s who of CMOs and senior-level marketers, AIMM has also brought agency, media and trade association leadership to the table, many with specializations in black, Hispanic, Asian and LGBTQ marketing, myself among them. Diverse, by design, it is evident that the Alliance is unified by a commitment to reverse a “flattening in the time and attention the marketing community is giving multicultural marketing,” as ANA CEO Bob Liodice put it.

Aug 18, 2018. Advertising Age by Rochelle Newman-Carrasco.- Charter members of the Association of National Advertisers’ Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing recently met in New York for the first all-committee gathering since the group officially kicked off earlier this year. A who’s who of CMOs and senior-level marketers, AIMM has also brought agency, media and trade association leadership to the table, many with specializations in black, Hispanic, Asian and LGBTQ marketing, myself among them. Diverse, by design, it is evident that the Alliance is unified by a commitment to reverse a “flattening in the time and attention the marketing community is giving multicultural marketing,” as ANA CEO Bob Liodice put it.

Liodice didn’t sugar coat the situation as he kicked off the meeting. “We’re failing,” he said, referring to sluggish sales and anemic business growth industry-wide. But then he pointed to multicultural marketing as an under-used source of brand health. “Multicultural marketing needs to be strongly considered as part of a comprehensive growth strategy,” he said.

Cultural targeting is central to the work of the Case for Change committee, led by co-chairs Nydia Sahagun, senior VP of segment marketing at Wells Fargo, and Manoj Raghunandanan, VP of global brand management at Johnson & Johnson. Their analysis suggests that years of oversimplification have set multicultural marketing back, contributing to intellectual interest but enabling action apathy.

AIMM co-founder and researcher Carlos Santiago has been working closely with the Metrics and Measurement Committee to address concerns identified in an AIMM benchmark study. “Accessibility, accuracy and affordability of multicultural data are pivotal issues,” Santiago said. “Without equally accurate data, it is nearly impossible to distinguish segment-specific performance from that of general market audiences.” He added that “blurred attribution tends to artificially decrease multicultural ROI and inflate the non-Hispanic-white contribution.”

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